nep-exp New Economics Papers
on Experimental Economics
Issue of 2021‒07‒26
thirty-two papers chosen by

  1. An Experimental Study of Within- and Cross-cultural Cooperation: Chinese and American Play in the Prisoner’s Dilemma Game By Michael Kuroda; Jieran Li; Jason Shachat; Lijia Wei; Bochen Zhu
  2. Charitable Giving: Framing and the Role of Information By Claudia Keser; Maximilian Späth
  3. Constrained School Choice under the Immediate Acceptance Mechanism: An Experimental QRE Analysis By Jorge Alcalde-Unzu; Flip Klijn; Marc Vorsatz
  4. Nudging Debtors to Pay Their Debt: Two Randomized Controlled Trials By Felix Holzmeister; Jürgen Huber; Michael Kirchler; Rene Schwaiger
  5. Unethical Decision Making and Sleep Restriction: Experimental Evidence By Dickinson, David L.; Masclet, David
  6. The Efficacy of Tournaments for Non-Routine Team Tasks By Florian Englmaier; Stefan Grimm; Dominik Grothe; David Schindler; Simeon Andreas Dermot Schudy
  7. Can we commit future managers to honesty? By Nicolas Jacquemet; Stéphane Luchini; J Rosaz; J Shogren
  8. A tale of two Koreas: property rights and fairness By Syngjoo Choi; Byung-Yeon Kim; Jungmin Lee; Sokbae (Simon) Lee
  9. If it Looks like a Human and Speaks like a Human... By Mario A. Maggioni; Domenico Rossignoli
  10. Job Search and Hiring with Two-Sided Limited Information about Workseekers' Skills By Carranza, Eliana; Garlick, Robert; Orkin, Kate; Rankin, Neil
  11. Does voting on tax fund destination imply a direct democracy effect? By Nicolas Jacquemet; Stéphane Luchini; Antoine Malézieux
  12. Contests with Network Externalities: Theory & Evidence By Luke A. Boosey; Christopher Brown
  13. Teaching and Incentives: Substitutes or Complements? By James Allen IV; Arlete Mahumane; James Riddell IV; Tanya Rosenblat; Dean Yang; Hang Yu
  14. Making it public: The effect of (private and public) wage proposals on efficiency and income distribution By Lara Ezquerra; Joaquin Gomez-Minambres; Natalia Jiminez; Praveen Kujal
  15. Randomization and Social Policy Evaluation Revisited By James Heckman
  16. Sharing tips for rice, chicken and vegetable production: Do voice messages and social learning complement extension services? By Almanzar, Miguel; de Brauw, Alan; Nakasone, Eduardo
  17. Closing the income-achievement gap? Experimental evidence from high-dosage tutoring in Dutch primary education By de Ree, Joppe; Maggioni, Mario A.; Paulle, Bowen; Rossignoli, Domenico; Ruijs, Nienke; Walentek, Dawid
  18. Limited Self-Knowledge and Survey Response Behavior By Armin Falk; Thomas Neuber; Philipp Strack
  19. The Impact of Sleep Restriction on Interpersonal Conflict Resolution and the Narcotic Effect By Dickinson, David L.; McEvoy, David M.; Bruner, David
  20. Information disclosure under liability: an experiment on public bads. By Julien Jacob; Eve-Angéline Lambert; Mathieu Lefebvre; Sarah Van Driessche
  21. Field Evidence of the Effects of Pro-sociality and Transparency on COVID-19 App Attractiveness By Dooley, Samuel; Turjeman, Dana; Dickerson, John P; Redmiles, Elissa M.
  22. The Experimenters' Dilemma: Inferential Preferences over Populations By Neeraja Gupta; Luca Rigott; Alistair Wilson
  23. Using Bank Savings Product Design for Empowering Women and Agricultural Development By Galdo, Jose C.
  24. Behavioral Mistakes Support Cooperation in an N-Person Repeated Public Goods Game By Jung-Kyoo Choi; Jun Sok Huhh
  25. Land Titling and Litigation By Benito Arruñada; Marco Fabbri; Michael Faure
  26. Employers’ willingness to invest in the training of temporary workers: a discrete choice experiment By Poulissen, Davey; de Grip, Andries; Fouarge, Didier; Künn, Annemarie
  27. Decentralizing Centralized Matching Markets: Implications from Early Offers in University Admissions By Julien Grenet; YingHua He; Dorothea K\"ubler
  28. Fighting Climate Change: The Role of Norms, Preferences, and Moral Values By Armin Falk; Peter Andre; Teodora Boneva; Felix Chopra
  29. The Dynastic Benefits of Early Childhood Education By García, Jorge Luis; Bennhoff, Frederik H.; Leaf, Duncan Ermini; Heckman, James J.
  30. Does Omitting Downstream Water Quality Change the Economic Benefits of Nutrient Reduction? Evidence from a Discrete Choice Experiment By Shr, Yau-Huo (Jimmy); Zhang, Wendong
  31. Group-identity and long-run cooperation: an experiment By Gabriele Camera; Alessandro Gioffre
  32. The Lasting Effects of Early Childhood Education on Promoting the Skills and Social Mobility of Disadvantaged African Americans By Jorge Luis Garcia; James J. Heckman; Victor Ronda

  1. By: Michael Kuroda (Economic Science Institute, Chapman University); Jieran Li (Economic Science Institute, Chapman University); Jason Shachat (Durham University and Wuhan University); Lijia Wei (Wuhan University); Bochen Zhu (Wuhan University)
    Abstract: We study whether cross- and within-culture groups have different cooperation rates in the Prisoner’s Dilemma Game. In an experiment, university students in China and America engage in a single iteration of the game, complete belief elicitation tasks regarding their opponents’ play and take a survey including attitudinal measurements regarding their in- and out-group attitudes. Cooperation rates are higher across the two countries are higher in both cross-culture and in within-culture interactions, although not significantly. We also find that Chinese participants cooperate less than American ones. Further, female Chinese participants are more cooperative than Chinese male ones. In the cross-culture treatment, Chinese participants underestimate the likelihood of cooperative behavior of their American counterparts, while Americans overestimate the same likelihood of their Chinese counterparts. Our results also show that Chinese participants cooperate more conditionally than American ones. Finally, while we find some attitudinal in- and out-biases both they do not generate meaningful impact on cooperative behavior.
    Keywords: Cross-culture; Prisoner’s Dilemma; Cooperation; Experiment
    JEL: C72 C92 D91
    Date: 2021
  2. By: Claudia Keser; Maximilian Späth
    Abstract: We study the impact of information on the effectiveness of a taking frame in the context of charitable giving. In our laboratory experiment, either the decision maker (giving frame) or the recipient (taking frame) receives an endowment. In both cases, the decision maker can freely decide the final allocation of the money. In addition to the frame, we vary the level of information that we provide about the worthiness of the receiving charity. In keeping with our theoretical prediction, participants donate significantly more, when the decision is framed as taking rather than as giving.
    Keywords: Information,Giving,Taking,Charity,Experiment,
    JEL: C91 D64 D80
    Date: 2021–07–12
  3. By: Jorge Alcalde-Unzu; Flip Klijn; Marc Vorsatz
    Abstract: The theoretical literature on public school choice proposes centralized mechanisms that assign children to schools on the basis of parents' preferences and the priorities children have for different schools. The related experimental literature analyzes in detail how various mechanisms fare in terms of welfare and stability of the resulting matchings, yet often provides only aggregate statistics of the individual behavior that leads to these outcomes (i.e., the degree to which subjects tell the truth in the induced simultaneous move game). In this paper, we show that the quantal response equilibrium adequately describes individual behavior and the resulting matching in a laboratory experiment on the (constrained) immediate acceptance mechanism. Specifically, the comparative statics of the quantal response equilibrium capture the directional changes of subject behavior and the prevalence of the different stable matchings when cardinal payoffs (i.e., relative preference intensities) are modified in the experiment.
    Keywords: laboratory experiment, school choice, immediate acceptance mechanism, Boston mechanism, quantal response equilibrium
    JEL: C78 C91 C92 D78 I20
    Date: 2021–07
  4. By: Felix Holzmeister; Jürgen Huber; Michael Kirchler; Rene Schwaiger
    Abstract: We conducted two large-scale, highly powered randomized controlled trials intended to encourage consumer debt repayments. In Study 1, we implemented five treatments varying the design of envelopes sent to debtors. We did not find any treatment effects on response and repayment rates compared to the control condition. In Study 2, we varied the letters' contents in nine treatments, implementing factorial combinations of social norm and (non-)deterrence nudges, which were either framed emotively or non-emotively. We find that all nudges are ineffective compared to the control condition and even tend to induce backfiring effects compared to the agency's original letter. Since comparable nudges have been shown to be highly effective in other studies, our study supports the literature, emphasizing that the success of nudging interventions crucially depends on the domain of application.
    Keywords: Nudging, randomized controlled trial, debt repayment
    JEL: C93 D91 G51
    Date: 2021
  5. By: Dickinson, David L. (Appalachian State University); Masclet, David (University of Rennes)
    Abstract: Recent examinations into the cognitive underpinnings of ethical decision making has focused on understanding whether honesty is more likely to result from deliberative or unconscious decision processes. We randomly assigned participants to a multi-night sleep manipulation, after which they completed 3 tasks of interest: imperfectly identifiable dishonesty (the Coin Flip task), identifiable dishonesty (the Matrix task), and anti-social allocation choices (the Money Burning game). We document the validity of the sleep protocol via significantly reduced nightly sleep levels (objectively measured using validated instrumentation) and significantly higher sleepiness ratings in the sleep-restricted (SR) group compared to the well-rested (WR) group. We report that money burning decisions are not statistically different between SR and WR participants. However, regarding honesty, we find significant and robust effects of SR on honesty. In total, given the connection between sleepiness and deliberation, these results add to the literature that has identified conditions under which deliberation impacts ethical choice. When dishonesty harms an abstract "other" person (e.g., the researcher's budget), reduced deliberation more likely increases dishonesty compared to when harm is done to someone at closer social distance (e.g., another subject).
    Keywords: ethical choice, dishonesty, antisocial behavior, sleep
    JEL: C91 D91 D63
    Date: 2021–07
  6. By: Florian Englmaier; Stefan Grimm; Dominik Grothe; David Schindler; Simeon Andreas Dermot Schudy
    Abstract: Tournaments are often used to improve performance in innovation contexts. Tournaments provide monetary incentives but also render teams’ identity and social-image concerns salient. We study the effects of tournaments on team performance in a non-routine task and identify the importance of these behavioral aspects. In a natural field experiment (n>1,700 participants), we vary the salience of team identity, social-image concerns, and whether teams face monetary incentives. Increased salience of team identity does not improve performance. Social-image motivates mainly the top-performing teams. Additional monetary incentives improve all teams’ outcomes without crowding out teams’ willingness to explore or perform similar tasks again.
    Keywords: team-work, tournaments, rankings, incentives, identity, image concerns, innovation, exploration, natural field experiment
    JEL: C93 D90 J24 J33 M52
    Date: 2021
  7. By: Nicolas Jacquemet (PSE - Paris School of Economics - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement, CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Stéphane Luchini; J Rosaz; J Shogren
    Abstract: In a competitive business environment, dishonesty can pay. Self-interested executives and managers can have incentive to shade the truth for personal gain. In response, the business community has considered how to commit these executives and managers to a higher ethical standard. The MBA Oath and the Dutch Bankers Oath are examples of such a commitment device. The question we test herein is whether the oath can be used as an effective form of ethics management for future executives/managers-who for our experiment we recruited from a leading French business school-by actually improving their honesty. Using a classic Sender-Receiver strategic game experiment, we reinforce professional identity by pre-selecting the group to which Receivers belong. This allows us to determine whether taking the oath deters lying among future managers. Our results suggest "yes and no." We observe that these future executives/managers who took a solemn honesty oath as a Sender were (a) significantly more likely to tell the truth when the lie was detrimental to the Receiver, but (b) were not more likely to tell the truth when the lie was mutually beneficial to both the Sender and Receiver. A joint product of our design is our ability to measure in-group bias in lying behavior in our population of subjects (comparing behavior of subjects in the same and different business schools). The experiment provides clear evidence of a lack of such bias.
    Keywords: Commitment,Lying,In-group bias
    Date: 2021
  8. By: Syngjoo Choi (Institute for Fiscal Studies); Byung-Yeon Kim (Institute for Fiscal Studies); Jungmin Lee (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University of Arkansas); Sokbae (Simon) Lee (Institute for Fiscal Studies and Columbia University and IFS)
    Abstract: We compare two groups of the non-student Korean population—native-born South Koreans (SK) and North Korean refugees (NK)—with contrasting institutional and cultural backgrounds. In our experiment, the subjects play dictator games under three different treatments in which the income source varies: first, the income is randomly given to the subject; second, it is earned by the subject; third, it is individually earned by the subject and an anonymous partner and then pooled together. We find that preferences for giving depend on the income source in different ways for the SK and NK subjects. The SK subjects become more selfish when the income is individually earned than when it is gifted to them. Furthermore, the NK subjects are not responsive to the earned income treatment but behave more pro-socially when individually earned incomes are pooled. The NK subjects behave in a more self-interested manner when they participated in market activities in North Korea.
    Date: 2019–12–09
  9. By: Mario A. Maggioni; Domenico Rossignoli
    Abstract: This paper presents the results of a behavioral experiment conducted between February 2020 and March 2021 at Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Milan Campus, in which students were matched with either a human or a humanoid robotic partner to play an iterated Prisoner’s Dilemma. The results of a Logit estimation procedure show that subjects are more likely to cooperate with human rather than with robotic partners; that they are more likely to cooperate after receiving a dialogic verbal reaction following a sub-optimal social outcome; and that the effect of the verbal reaction is not dependent on the nature of the partner. Our findings provide new evidence on the effects of verbal communication in strategic frameworks. The results are robust to the exclusion of students of Economics-related subjects, to the inclusion of a set of psychological and behavioral controls, to the way subjects perceive robots’ behavior, and to potential gender biases in human-human interactions.
    JEL: C91 D91
    Date: 2021
  10. By: Carranza, Eliana (World Bank); Garlick, Robert (Duke University); Orkin, Kate (CSAE); Rankin, Neil (Stellenbosch University)
    Abstract: We present field experimental evidence that limited information about workseekers' skills distorts both firm and workseeker behavior. Assessing workseekers' skills, giving workseekers their assessment results, and helping them to credibly share the results with firms increases workseekers' employment and earnings. It also aligns their beliefs and search strategies more closely with their skills. Giving assessment results only to workseekers has similar effects on beliefs and search, but smaller effects on employment and earnings. Giving assessment results only to firms increases callbacks. These patterns are consistent with two-sided information frictions, a new finding that can inform the design of information-provision mechanisms.
    Keywords: skills, job search, employment, wages, labor markets, active labor market
    JEL: J23 J24 J31 J41 O15 O17
    Date: 2021–07
  11. By: Nicolas Jacquemet (PSE - Paris School of Economics - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement, CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Stéphane Luchini (CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, AMSE - Aix-Marseille Sciences Economiques - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ECM - École Centrale de Marseille - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - AMU - Aix Marseille Université); Antoine Malézieux (CEREN - Centre de Recherche sur l'ENtreprise [Dijon] - BSB - Burgundy School of Business (BSB) - Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Dijon Bourgogne (ESC))
    Abstract: Does giving taxpayers a voice over the destination of tax revenues lead to more honest income declarations? Previous experiments have shown that giving participants the opportunity to select the organization that receives their tax funds tends to increase tax compliance. The aim of this paper is to assess whether this increase in compliance is induced by the sole fact of giving subjects a choice — a "direct democracy effect". To that aim, we ask participants to a tax evasion game to choose, in a collective or individual choice setting, between two very similar organizations which provide the same social (ecological) benefits. We elicit compliance for both organizations before the choice is made so as to control for the counter-factual compliance decision. We find that democracy does not increase compliance, and even observe a slight negative effect — in particular for women. Our results confirm the existence of a commitment effect of democracy, leading to favor more the selected organization when it was actively chosen. The commitment effect of democracy is however not enough to overcome the decrease in the level of compliance. Thanks to response times data, we show that prior choice on similar options as compared to a purely random selection weakens the preference for honesty. One important field application of our results is that democracy in tax spending must offer real choices to tax payers to improve compliance.
    Keywords: Commitment,Direct democracy effect,Voting,Tax evasion game
    Date: 2021–09
  12. By: Luke A. Boosey (Department of Economics, Florida State University); Christopher Brown (Krannert School of Management, Purdue University)
    Abstract: We study competitive behavior in all-pay Tullock (1980) contests with identity-dependent externalities (IDEs) governed by a fixed network. First, we introduce a model of network contest games, in which the prize generates an externality---which may be positive or negative---that impacts each player directly connected by the network to the winner of the contest. We establish existence of Nash equilibria and provide sufficient conditions for uniqueness, building on recent theoretical advances for games played on networks. We then derive closed-form results, with an intuitive characterization, for regular networks and for a subclass of core-periphery structures. Second, using a controlled laboratory experiment, we provide robust empirical support for the comparative statics predictions of the model. Our experimental findings also suggest that observed patterns of mean over-investment relative to point predictions may be driven by both heterogeneous joy of winning and social efficiency concerns that emerge in the presence of IDEs. Altogether, our study provides a novel application for the theory of network games, and new insights regarding behavior in all-pay contests.
    Keywords: contests, networks, identity-dependent externalities, network games, best-response potential, experiment, joy of winning
    JEL: C72 C92 D72 D74 D85 Z13
    Date: 2021–07
  13. By: James Allen IV; Arlete Mahumane; James Riddell IV; Tanya Rosenblat; Dean Yang; Hang Yu
    Abstract: Interventions to promote learning are often categorized into supply- and demand-side approaches. In a randomized experiment to promote learning about COVID-19 among Mozambican adults, we study the interaction between a supply and a demand intervention, respectively: 1) teaching, and 2) providing financial incentives to learners. In theory, teaching and learner-incentives may be substitutes (crowding out one another) or complements (enhancing one another). While experts surveyed in advance predicted that the two would be substitutes, we instead find they are complements. The combination of teaching and incentive treatments has a substantial effect on COVID-19 knowledge test scores, raising them by 0.5 standard deviations.
    JEL: D90 I12
    Date: 2021–07
  14. By: Lara Ezquerra (Universidad de las Islas Baleares, Spain); Joaquin Gomez-Minambres (Lafayette College, Department of Economics and Chapman University, Economic Science Institute.); Natalia Jiminez (Universidad Pablo Olavide, Spain); Praveen Kujal (Middlesex University)
    Abstract: The implications of (public or private) pre-play communication and information revelation in a labour relationship is not well understood. We address these implications theoretically and experimentally. In our baseline experiments, the employer offers a wage to the worker who may then accept or reject it. In the public and private treatment, workers, moving first, make a non-binding private or public wage proposal. Our theoretical model assumes that wage proposals convey information about a worker's minimum acceptable wage and are misreported with a certain probability. It predicts that, on average, wage proposals lead to higher wage offers and acceptance rates, with the highest wages under private proposals. While both, public and private, proposals increase efficiency over the baseline, private proposals generate higher worker incomes. Broad support for the theoretical predictions is found in the laboratory experiments. Our work has important implications for recent policies promoting public information on wage negotiations. We find that while wage proposals promote higher wages, efficiency, and income equality, public information on wage negotiations is likely to benefit firms more than workers.
    Keywords: wage negotiations, cheap talk, laboratory experiments, ultimatum game, wage proposals
    JEL: C90 C72 J31 M52
    Date: 2021
  15. By: James Heckman (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University of Chicago)
    Abstract: This paper examines the case for randomized controlled trials in economics. I revisit my previous paper “Randomization and Social Policy Evaluation” and update its message. I present a brief summary of the history of randomization in economics. I identify two waves of enthusiasm for the method as “Two Awakenings” because of the near-religious zeal associated with each wave. The First Wave substantially contributed to the development of microeconometrics because of the ?awed nature of the experimental evidence. The Second Wave has improved experimental designs to avoid some of the technical statistical issues identified by econometricians in the wake of the First Wave. However, the deep conceptual issues about parameters estimated, and the economic interpretation and the policy relevance of the experimental results have not been addressed in the Second Wave.
    Date: 2020–02–10
  16. By: Almanzar, Miguel; de Brauw, Alan; Nakasone, Eduardo
    Abstract: Considerable resources are allocated to agricultural extension around the world, with questionable cost effectiveness. An obvious question is whether information and communication technologies can be used to push agricultural extension messages effectively at a lower cost. Based on a clustered randomized control trial, we evaluate a pilot in which farmers receive information about agricultural production on rice, vegetables, and chicken rearing via mobile phone voice messages. Our experimental design included groups of households without and with farmer group membership. We evaluate whether farmers received the information, learned it, shared it with non-recipients, and used it, and how the effects of the information campaign on these outcomes changes with being part of an existing farmer group and the proportion of the village population receiving information. We find farmers in the information treatment groups were more knowledgeable about the practices promoted, believe it helped them produce more, and shared it with others. The information campaign was more effective for rice and to a lesser extent chicken rearing than for vegetables. We do not find differential effects by farmer group membership. We find that the amount of information sent to the village increases information diffusion but the speed of sharing the information is similar across treatment groups and by different saturation rates. We conclude that targeted and simple information campaigns can help supplement the information needs of farmers in a cost-effective manner, independently of their participation in farmer groups or extension programs.
    Keywords: CAMBODIA; SOUTH EAST ASIA; ASIA; rice; poultry; chickens; vegetables; food production; agricultural extension; technology; networks; information transfer; agricultural production; technology adoption
    Date: 2021
  17. By: de Ree, Joppe; Maggioni, Mario A.; Paulle, Bowen; Rossignoli, Domenico; Ruijs, Nienke; Walentek, Dawid
    Abstract: We present experimental evidence on a high-dosage tutoring (HDT) program implemented in three primary schools in a low-income neighborhood in the Netherlands. We document treatment effects of 0.28 national population standard deviations in math achievement scores (p<0.01) after one school year. These treatment effects are sizable and can account for roughly 40% of the math achievement gap between low-income and high-income students in the Netherlands. As most of the evidence on intensive tutoring programs draws on research from low-income settings in the US, our findings show that (i.) HDT programs can be successfully built from the ground up and exported to different institutional settings while maintaining meaningful effect sizes, and, (ii.) existing income-achievement gaps can be substantially reduced with practical and scalable interventions like HDT.
    Date: 2021–07–14
  18. By: Armin Falk; Thomas Neuber; Philipp Strack
    Abstract: We study response behavior in surveys and show how the explanatory power of self-reports can be improved. First, we develop a choice model of survey response behavior under the assumption that the respondent has imperfect self-knowledge about her individual characteristics. In panel data, the model predicts that the variance in responses for different characteristics increases in self-knowledge and that the variance for a given characteristic over time is non-monotonic in self-knowledge. Importantly, the ratio of these variances identifies an individual’s level of self-knowledge, i.e. the latter can be inferred from observed response patterns. Second, we develop a consistent and unbiased estimator for self-knowledge based on the model. Third, we run an experiment to test the model’s main predictions in a context where the researcher knows the true underlying characteristics. The data confirm the model’s predictions as well as the estimator’s validity. Finally, we turn to a large panel data set, estimate individual levels of self-knowledge, and show that accounting for differences in self-knowledge significantly increases the explanatory power of regression models. Using a median split in self-knowledge and regressing risky behaviors on self-reported risk attitudes, we find that the R2 can be multiple times larger for above- than below-median subjects. Similarly, gender differences in risk attitudes are considerably larger when restricting samples to subjects with high self-knowledge. These examples illustrate how using the estimator may improve inference from survey data.
    JEL: C83 D83 C91 D91 J24
    Date: 2021
  19. By: Dickinson, David L. (Appalachian State University); McEvoy, David M. (Appalachian State University); Bruner, David (Appalachian State University)
    Abstract: Insufficient sleep is commonplace, and understanding how this affects interpersonal conflict holds implications for personal and workplace settings. We experimentally manipulated participant sleep state for a full week prior to administering a stylized bargaining task that models payoff uncertainty at impasse with a final-offer arbitration (FOA) procedure. FOA use in previous trials decreases the likelihood of voluntary settlements going forward—the narcotic effect. We also report a novel result that a significantly stronger narcotic effect is estimated for more sleepy bargaining pairs. One implication is that insufficient sleep predicts increased dependency on alternatives to voluntarily resolution of interpersonal conflict.
    Keywords: bargaining, sleep restriction, arbitration, dispute/conflict resolution, narcotic effect
    JEL: J52 D74 D90 C92 D83
    Date: 2021–07
  20. By: Julien Jacob; Eve-Angéline Lambert; Mathieu Lefebvre; Sarah Van Driessche
    Abstract: We experimentally investigate the impact of information disclosure on managing collective harms that are caused jointly by a group of liable agents. Subjects interact in a public bad setting and must choose ex ante how much to contribute in order to reduce the probability of causing a common damage. If a damage occurs, subjects bear a part of the loss according to the liability-sharing rule in force.We consider two existing rules: a per capita rule and a proportional rule. Our aim is to analyze the relative impact of information disclosure under each rule. We show that information disclosure increases contributions only under a per capita rule. This result challenges the classical results regarding the positive effects of information disclosure, since we show that this impact may depend upon the legal context. We also show that while a proportional rule leads to higher contributions than a per capita one, the positive effect of disclosure on a per capita rule makes it as efficient as a proportional rule without information disclosure.
    Keywords: Information disclosure; Collective harms; Environmental Regulation; Liability Sharing Rules; Public Bads; Multiple Tortfeasors.
    JEL: C92 H41 K13 K32 Q53
    Date: 2021
  21. By: Dooley, Samuel; Turjeman, Dana (University of Michigan); Dickerson, John P; Redmiles, Elissa M. (Microsoft Research)
    Abstract: COVID-19 exposure-notification apps have struggled to gain adoption. Existing literature posits as potential causes of this low adoption: privacy concerns, insufficient data transparency, and the type of appeal used to pitch the pro-social behavior of installing the app. In a field experiment, we advertised CovidDefense, Louisiana's COVID-19 exposure-notification app, at the time it was released. We find that all three hypothesized factors -- privacy, data transparency, and appeals framing -- relate to app adoption, even when controlling for age, gender, and community density. Specifically, we find that collective-good appeals are effective in fostering pro-social COVID-19 app behavior in the field. Our results empirically support existing policy guidance on the use of collective-good appeals and offer real-world evidence in the on-going debate on the efficacy of such appeals. Further, we offer nuanced findings regarding the efficacy of transparency -- about both privacy and data collection -- in encouraging health technology adoption and pro-social COVID-19 behavior. Our results may aid in fostering pro-social public-health-related behavior and for the broader debate regarding privacy and data transparency in digital healthcare.
    Date: 2021–07–22
  22. By: Neeraja Gupta; Luca Rigott; Alistair Wilson
    Abstract: We compare three populations commonly used in experiments by economists and other social scientists: undergraduate students at a physical location (lab), Amazon's Mechanical Turk (MTurk), and Prolific. The comparison is made along three dimensions: the noise in the data due to inattention, the cost per observation, and the elasticity of response. We draw samples from each population, examining decisions in four one-shot games with varying tensions between the individual and socially efficient choices. When there is no tension, where individual and pro-social incentives coincide, noisy behavior accounts for 60% of the observations on MTurk, 19% on Prolific, and 14% for the lab. Taking costs into account, if noisy data is the only concern Prolific dominates from an inferential power point of view, combining relatively low noise with a cost per observation one fifth of the lab's. However, because the lab population is more sensitive to treatment, across our main PD game comparison the lab still outperforms both Prolific and MTurk.
    Date: 2021–07
  23. By: Galdo, Jose C. (Carleton University)
    Abstract: This study examines whether the random allocation of single and joint saving accounts to cash crop farmers in rural Ethiopia is associated with changes in decision-making authority and control over resources that ultimately lead to changes in labor effort, schooling allocations, income, consumption, agricultural investments, and crop output. Women and children work more when joint deposit accounts are available. Likewise, meaningful effects on school participation are reported for girls. Consistent with posited channels of intrahousehold bargaining models, women from households assigned to the joint saving treatment group show significant gains in autonomy and control of savings resources, and financial empowerment. While we find substantial gains in subjective wellbeing for single and joint account experimental groups, no meaningful impacts on agricultural crop output, income, and consumption are found. However, a systematic decumulation of livestock assets is observed across households assigned to the joint account treatment group.
    Keywords: bank savings, agriculture markets, labor, schooling, women empowerment, RCT
    JEL: C93 D14 G21 J43 I21 O12 R20
    Date: 2021–06
  24. By: Jung-Kyoo Choi; Jun Sok Huhh
    Abstract: This study investigates the effect of behavioral mistakes on the evolutionary stability of the cooperative equilibrium in a repeated public goods game. Many studies show that behavioral mistakes have detrimental effects on cooperation because they reduce the expected length of mutual cooperation by triggering the conditional retaliation of the cooperators. However, this study shows that behavioral mistakes could have positive effects. Conditional cooperative strategies are either neutrally stable or are unstable in a mistake-free environment, but we show that behavioral mistakes can make \textit{all} of the conditional cooperative strategies evolutionarily stable. We show that behavioral mistakes stabilize the cooperative equilibrium based on the most intolerant cooperative strategy by eliminating the behavioral indistinguishability between conditional cooperators in the cooperative equilibrium. We also show that mistakes make the tolerant conditional cooperative strategies evolutionarily stable by preventing the defectors from accumulating the free-rider's advantages. Lastly, we show that the behavioral mistakes could serve as a criterion for the equilibrium selection among cooperative equilibria.
    Date: 2021–06
  25. By: Benito Arruñada; Marco Fabbri; Michael Faure
    Abstract: We study a large-scale land titling reform implemented as a randomized control-trial to isolate its causal effects on litigation. The reform consisted of demarcating land parcels, registering existing customary rights, and granting additional legal protection to rightholders. We find that, ten years after implementation, the reform doubled the likelihood of households experiencing land-related litigation, but disputes do not escalate into more frequent violent episodes. We suggest that this litigation increase is likely to reflect the complementarity of land titling by registration and by judicial procedures aimed at further clarifying property rights, as the reform registered titles to all parcels but left many of these titles subject to adverse claims. This raised the demand for complementary litigation aimed at perfecting titles for low value parcels which, under the customary system, it was individually optimal to keep unclarified. Consistent with this explanation, we find that the observed increase in litigation takes place among households characterized by low levels of wealth and market integration, who are likely to own land of lower value.
    Keywords: experimental survey, informal institutions, land rights formalization, land tenure reform, litigation, randomized control trial
    JEL: K11 K4 Q15
    Date: 2021–07
  26. By: Poulissen, Davey (RS: GSBE other - not theme-related research, ROA / Health, skills and inequality); de Grip, Andries (ROA / Health, skills and inequality, RS: GSBE Theme Learning and Work, RS: SBE - MACIMIDE); Fouarge, Didier (RS: GSBE Theme Learning and Work, RS: GSBE Theme Data-Driven Decision-Making, ROA / Labour market and training); Künn, Annemarie (RS: GSBE Theme Learning and Work, ROA / Labour market and training)
    Abstract: Various studies have shown that temporary workers participate less in training than those on permanent contracts. Human resources practices are considered to be an important explanation for this difference. We develop a theoretical framework for employers’ provision of training that explicitly incorporates the costs and benefits associated with training investments in employees with different types of employment contracts. Our framework not only predicts employers to be less willing to invest in temporary workers due to the shorter time horizon associated with such an investment, but it also provides insights into how this willingness depends on characteristics of the training that are related to the expected costs and benefits of the training investment. A discrete choice experiment is used to empirically test the predictions from our theoretical framework. In line with our theoretical framework, we find that employers are less likely to invest in the training of temporary workers. This particularly holds when temporary workers do not have the prospect of a permanent contract with their current employer. Furthermore, we show that employers’ likelihood of investing in temporary workers indeed depends on aspects related to the costs and benefits of training, that is, a financial contribution to the training costs made by employees, a repayment agreement that applies when workers leave the organisation prematurely, and the transferability of the skills being trained. Our findings can be used to increase employers’ willingness to invest in temporary workers. However, similar effects are observed when looking at employers’ willingness to invest in permanent workers, suggesting that it will be difficult to decrease the gap in employers’ willingness to invest between temporary and permanent workers.
    JEL: J24 J41 J62
    Date: 2021–05–31
  27. By: Julien Grenet; YingHua He; Dorothea K\"ubler
    Abstract: The matching literature often recommends market centralization under the assumption that agents know their own preferences and that their preferences are fixed. We find counterevidence to this assumption in a quasi-experiment. In Germany's university admissions, a clearinghouse implements the early stages of the Gale-Shapley algorithm in real time. We show that early offers made in this decentralized phase, although not more desirable, are accepted more often than later ones. These results, together with survey evidence and a theoretical model, are consistent with students' costly learning about universities. We propose a hybrid mechanism to combine the advantages of decentralization and centralization.
    Date: 2021–07
  28. By: Armin Falk; Peter Andre; Teodora Boneva; Felix Chopra
    Abstract: We document individual willingness to fight climate change and its behavioral determinants in a large representative sample of US adults. Willingness to fight climate change – as measured through an incentivized donation decision – is highly heterogeneous across the population. Individual beliefs about social norms, economic preferences such as patience and altruism, as well as universal moral values positively predict climate preferences. Moreover, we document systematic misperceptions of prevalent social norms. Respondents vastly underestimate the prevalence of climate- friendly behaviors and norms among their fellow citizens. Providing respondents with correct information causally raises individual willingness to fight climate change as well as individual support for climate policies. The effects are strongest for individuals who are skeptical about the existence and threat of global warming.
    JEL: D64 D83 D91 Q51 Z13
    Date: 2021
  29. By: García, Jorge Luis (Clemson University); Bennhoff, Frederik H. (University of Chicago); Leaf, Duncan Ermini (University of Southern California); Heckman, James J. (University of Chicago)
    Abstract: This paper monetizes the life-cycle intragenerational and intergenerational benefits of the Perry Preschool Project, a pioneering high-quality early childhood education program implemented before Head Start that targeted disadvantaged African-Americans and was evaluated by a randomized trial. It has the longest follow-up of any experimentally evaluated early childhood education program. We follow participants into late midlife as well as their children into adulthood. Impacts on the original participants and their children generate substantial benefits. Access to life-cycle data enables us to evaluate the accuracy of widely used schemes to forecast life-cycle benefits from early-life test scores, which we find wanting.
    Keywords: cost-benefit analysis, dynastic benefits, early childhood education, intergenerational program evaluation, life-cycle benefits
    JEL: J13 I28 C93 H43
    Date: 2021–06
  30. By: Shr, Yau-Huo (Jimmy); Zhang, Wendong
    Abstract: Discrete choice experiments have been extensively used to value environmental quality; however, some important attributes may be often omitted due to design challenges. In the case of agricultural water pollution, overlooking downstream water quality benefits could lead to biased estimates and misinterpretations of local water quality attributes presented in the choice experiments. Using a split-sample design and a statewide survey of Iowa residents, we provide the first systematic evaluation of how households’ willingness-to-pay for water quality change when downstream water quality benefits, hypoxic zone reduction in our case, are omitted. We find that omitting non-local water quality attributes significantly reduces the total economic value of nutrient reduction programs but does not bias the marginal willingness-to-pay for local water quality attributes. We also find suggestive evidence showing that such omission, in line with the theoretical prediction, only changes the preferences of respondents who are aware of the downstream impacts of local water quality improvement plans. In addition, our results show that providing information on the non-local water quality benefits of nutrient reduction makes respondents less informed about the water quality issues more likely to support the water quality improvement plans.
    Date: 2021–01–01
  31. By: Gabriele Camera (Economic Science Institute, Chapman University and DSE, University of Bologna); Alessandro Gioffre (DISEI, University of Florence)
    Abstract: The sudden appearance of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic triggered extreme and open-ended “lockdowns†to manage the disease. Should these drastic interventions be the blueprint for future epidemics? We construct an analytical framework, based on the theory of random matching, which makes explicit how epidemics spread through economic activity. Imposing lockdowns by assumption prevents contagion and reduces healthcare costs, but also disrupts income-generation processes. We characterize how lockdowns impact the contagion process and social welfare. Numerical analysis suggests that protracted, open-ended lockdowns are generally suboptimal, bringing into question the policy responses seen in many countries.
    Keywords: decentralized markets, random matching, contagion, nonpharmaceutical interventions
    JEL: C6 D6 I1
    Date: 2021
  32. By: Jorge Luis Garcia (Clemson University); James J. Heckman (The University of Chicago); Victor Ronda (Aarhus University)
    Abstract: This paper demonstrates multiple beneficial impacts of a program promoting intergenerational mobility for disadvantaged African-American children and their children. The program improves outcomes of the first-generation treatment group across the life cycle, which translates into better family environments for the second generation leading to positive intergenerational gains. There are long-lasting beneficial program effects on cognition through age 54, contradicting claims of fadeout that have dominated popular discussions of early childhood programs. Children of the first-generation treatment group have higher levels of education and employment, lower levels of criminal activity, and better health than children of the first-generation control group.
    Keywords: intergenerational mobility, racial inequality, social mobility
    JEL: J13 I28 C93 H43
    Date: 2021–07

General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.